SAP pays Sun to keep older versions of Java up to date
SAP is paying Sun Microsystems to keep the older version 1.4.2 of Java up to date. The two companies have made an agreement covering several years, under which, users of the NetWeaver middleware platform can take advantage of Sun's Java Standard Edition for Business. This will enable SAP's clients to keep on using Java SE 1.4.2 on both Windows platforms (x86_32, x86_64, IA64), and under Linux (x86_32, IA64), while getting support and release from liability, from Sun. The reason for the agreement is that the older 2004 version of NetWeaver needs this version of Java.
Under the agreement, Sun will give users security and maintenance releases, critical fixes, and support for up to 15 years. Sun itself announced last year that it was going to stop providing free support for Java 1.4 and revisions of Java 1.4.2. At the same time, it said it would charge a monthly fee of between $10 and $12.50 per workplace for supporting users of Java 1.4.